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“Directions for Use” by Ana Ristović [Why This Book Should Win]

Today’s poetry entry into the Why This Book Should Win series is from BTBA judge—and Riffraff co-owner—Emma Ramadan. Directions for Use by Ana Ristović, translated from the Serbian by Steven Teref and Maja Teref (Serbia, Zephyr Press) Very occasionally, reading a book in translation can feel like I’m ...

“Astroecology” by Johannes Heldén [Why This Book Should Win]

This morning’s poetry entry into the Why This Book Should Win series is from BTBA judge—and Riffraff co-owner—Emma Ramadan. Astroecology by Johannes Heldén, translated from the Swedish by Kirkwood Adams, Elizabeth Clark Wessel, and Johannes Heldén (Sweden, Argos Books) Johannes Heldén’s Astroecology is an ...

“Before Lyricism” by Eleni Vakalo [Why This Book Should Win]

This morning’s entry in the “Why This Book Should Win” series is from BTBA judge and Riffraff co-owner, Emma Ramadan. Before Lyricism by Eleni Vakalo, translated from Greek by Karen Emmerich (Greece, Ugly Duckling Presse) I would happily and readily make the argument that of all the books on the BTBA poetry ...

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Three Percent #127: The 2017 Best Translated Book Award Finalists

Riffraff co-owner and BTBA poetry judge Emma Ramadan joins Chad and Tom to talk about the fifteen finalists for this year’s Best Translated Book Awards. After breaking down the poetry and fiction lists, the three talk about the new New York Times Match Book column and the value of booksellers and librarians. This ...

“In Praise of Defeat” by Abdellatif Laâbi [Why This Book Should Win]

Between the announcement of the Best Translated Book Award longlists and the unveiling of the finalists, we will be covering all thirty-five titles in the Why This Book Should Win series. Enjoy learning about all the various titles selected by the fourteen fiction and poetry judges, and I hope you find a few to purchase and ...

“Instructions Within” by Ashraf Fayadh [Why This Book Should Win]

Between the announcement of the Best Translated Book Award longlists and the unveiling of the finalists, we will be covering all thirty-five titles in the Why This Book Should Win series. Enjoy learning about all the various titles selected by the fourteen fiction and poetry judges, and I hope you find a few to purchase and ...

Bye Bye Blondie

Many of Virginie Despentes’s books revolve around the same central idea: “To be born a woman [is] the worst fate in practically every society.” But this message is nearly always packaged in easy-to-read books that fill you with the pleasure of a trashy popular novel. The writing is straightforward, not overly literary, ...